Airline tickets jump ahead of Christmas celebrations


A Safarilink plane. FILE PHOTO | NMG

The price of domestic flight tickets is rising ahead of the festive season with some routes fully booked just days to Christmas. 

Prices for early bookings between December 20 and 25 have almost doubled on some routes compared to reservations made a few weeks ago. 

Unlike the previous years when some routes were not fully booked by this time, nearly all the airlines, especially those flying the coastal destinations like Lamu and Mombasa have no space available for the Christmas season. 

The move that comes as a big boost to the airlines' earnings is likely to inconvenience thousands of travellers planning to spend their holiday in Mombasa. 

"We have seen a tremendous growth in early booking ahead of the festive season. I can tell you that some routes are fully booked as we talk," Safarilink Chief Executive Alex Avedi told the Business Daily on Tuesday. 

Travellers booking now to fly from Nairobi to Malindi starting December 21 on Jambojet are paying Sh19,400 on a one-way air ticket, up from about Sh9,200 previously. 

Skyward Express charges Sh19,240 on a one-way ticket from Nairobi to Malindi on December 21 if travellers book now, up from an average of Sh8,880 on November 6. 

Renegade Air is charging Sh13,600 from Nairobi to Kisumu on a one-way air ticket up from Sh6,800 it was charging on the route last month. 

Jambojet charges Sh12,200 on December 25th on a one-way air ticket from Nairobi-Mombasa up from Sh8,200 it was charging last month. 

Skyward Express is fully booked from Nairobi to Mombasa between December 23 to 25. It’s also booked on the route between December 27 and 28. Skyward Express is also fully booked on the Nairobi-Ukunda route from December 23rd -December 24th. 

Safarilink is fully booked on the Nairobi-Lamu route between December December 21 -December 29th. 

Besides flying, travellers to the coast have an option of driving, taking a bus or a train.

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